Forest

Rob Wallis

 

If you stray off the track

in pursuit of the lyrebird you heard,

segue of magpie/kookaburra/parrot,

brushing fronds from your face,

finding the bird’s call

behind you instead of ahead,

black globular eyes

tracking you down,

you may experience a shudder

of panic as the forest

closes in. Mountain ash,

tree ferns, cockatoos sweeping

the sky inhale your presence.

Wind slaps strips of bark

against the trunks, tapping out

resined silence. Move into this stillness,

into this rhythm with your own song.

You are not lost, you have

found a part of yourself

as ancient as trees,

as luminous as words.

 

Rob Wallis’ third volume of poetry, Man In A Glass Suit (Mark Time Books) was published in 2011. His poems have appeared in Woorilla, The Mozzie, Poetry Monash, Wet Ink, Blue Dog and Westerly. His awards include the FAW John Shaw Neilson Poetry Award and the MPU Martin Downey Urban Realism Prize.

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